[Spoilers for the Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. season 3 finale ahead.]
Season 3 of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. left the show’s core team in a state of disarray. Perhaps none felt the effect of this shakeup more than Chloe Bennet’s Daisy Johnson, aka Quake; by the end of the season she was left alone and on the run, having gone rogue in the months following the battle with Hive.
That battle may still be weighing heavily on Daisy heading into season 4, too. Bennet recently commented on Daisy’s mindset in the new season, pointing out that there are some unresolved issues that she’s going to have to face before she can move on from the events of the season 3 finale.
EW‘s Spoiler Room brought the scoop on Bennet’s comment, where she discussed both a secret Daisy is keeping and the burden she must now be facing. Daisy was ready to return to Hive, but no one on the team knows that. As Bennet put it:
“The two people who know she did that are both dead, so no one else knows. There must be a moment coming up in the next season where she reveals that. I think she feels like she can’t get close to people because wherever she goes, death follows. That hit home with her, especially this time.”
This could lead to Daisy having a much darker mindset than was seen in previous seasons, especially since she doesn’t have the rest of the team to help her sort through her pain at the moment. Given that Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. is shifting to a later timeslot, this might even skew the show a bit closer to some of Marvel’s Netflix offerings in terms of tone. With Marvel hinting at the inclusion of Hellfire or possibly even Ghost Rider in the fourth season too, a shift to a slightly darker tone wouldn’t necessarily be out of place.
The big question regarding Daisy’s secret and what likely equates to survivor’s guilt is how the character will come through it in the end. In real life, major tragedies can have long-term effects on people; for superheroes, those “this changes everything” moments usually aren’t quite so lasting. If Daisy makes a journey through guilt and depression and comes out a stronger character as a result, then that could make for some compelling drama in a show that’s been a bit hit-or-miss in that regard over the years. If it’s used only as a means to skew the show darker (or worse, as a partial-season gimmick before bringing everyone back to the status quo) then it will might not sit well with the fans.
Of course, some will complain that Daisy’s character arc is too common of a focus in the show; though there have been major arcs in Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., the core story can be traced from when Daisy was a hacker to her becoming an agent to finding out she was an Inhuman and then to her emotional involvement in the battle with Hive. She’s been a driving force in the show since the first episode, which isn’t necessarily a bad thing so long as her character is handled well. Provided that the aftermath of the third season goes well, then she might also be just the character to adjust the show’s tone moving forward.
Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. season 4 airs on ABC Tuesday nights at 10/9c, starting on September 20th, 2016.